Habitat Montco is More Than a Homebuilder - We Repair Homes Too!

Posted by Lauren
Hits: 459

By Elizabeth Bowers, Director of Development and Communications

In an effort to serve more families in Montgomery County, Habitat MontCo started the Critical Home Repair Program in 2013. Habitat MontCo’s Critical Home Repair Program provides low-cost home repairs to residents of Montgomery County who make between 20% and 80% of median household income.

Repairs address critical needs impacting safety, security, and/or accessibility. Repairs typically consist of roof repairs, HVAC system repair/replacement, plumbing systems repairs, accessibility modifications, and electrical system repairs. The average cost of a critical home repair is $7,500 with smaller repairs (accessibility modifications) averaging $5,000 and larger repairs (multi-system repairs) costing up to $15,000. These repairs are completed on a sliding scale so that the homeowners contribute a maximum of 30% of the repair costs, while HFHMC and collaborating organizations pay the rest. Homeowners pay a portion of the cost of their repair based on a sliding scale and also perform volunteer “sweat equity” in partnership with Habitat MontCo.

This program was life changing for Susan and Jim Richardson.  Jim is in his 60s and is an army veteran who is disabled; Susan is in her 70s and retired a few years ago. Eight months ago, Susan’s mother, who is 91, moved in with the Richardsons so they could help care for her. This winter, the Richardsons’ furnace broke.  They had no heat in the entire two-story home that they have owned for the past 20 years.  When they found out that replacing the furnace was going to cost nearly $8,000, they didn’t know what they were going to do.  They couldn’t afford to replace the heater, but they couldn’t stay in their home without fixing it.

Fortunately, they found our Critical Home Repair program.  They were ecstatic that they qualified this program; and jumped at the chance to partner with Habitat. Habitat replaced their furnace and made sure this family had heat. The Richardsons paid for their portion of the repair, about 9%, and spent time volunteering in our ReStore to complete their “sweat equity” for the project.

You are making a difference and transforming lives for families like the Richardsons; your support is making a difference.  If you would like to support the Critical Home Repair Program, please contact Elizabeth Bowers, the Director of Development, at ebowers@habitatmontco.org.  We are also in need of skilled volunteers to help complete the home repairs.  If you would like to volunteer, please contact Cara Przybylowicz, the Volunteer and Community Relations Manager, at .